College football futures watch: Ohio State’s title chances take a hit

Ryan Day enters his second season at the helm of the Ohio State Buckeyes
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Ricky Dimon

NCAAF· 2 weeks ago

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Since graduating from Davidson (The College That Stephen Curry Built), I have been writing about sports--just about any and all you can think of!--and coaching tennis in Atlanta, Ga. Beyond the four major sports, I am an avid tennis fan and cover the ATP Tour on a daily basis. If I'm not busy writing, you can generally find me on a tennis court or traveling the world wherever a sporting event takes me.

There has not been a ton of moving and shaking with futures odds because the 2021 college football season is still in its infantile stages. But that’s not to say there has been a complete lack of notable results. Ohio State, which finished runner-up to Alabama in 2020, lost at home to Oregon this past Saturday. That obviously doesn’t help quarterback C.J. Stroud’s Heisman Trophy chances, either.

Let’s take a look at where some of the futures markets stand following two full weeks of college football action.

National Championship

Alabama +180
Georgia +330
Oklahoma +750
Clemson +800
Ohio State +900
Oregon +2500

Ohio State took the biggest tumble on the National Championship table, plunging to +900. The Buckeyes trail Alabama, Georgia, Oklahoma, and Clemson. That’s what happen when you lose to the Ducks 35-28. Their defense has been a disaster through two weeks, having previously surrendered 31 points in a win over Minnesota.

Beyond the top five favorites, Oregon has climbed into the 6th spot at +2500. Is there still some value there despite the Ducks’ ever-improving odds? Maybe so. They are up to 4th in the rankings and have only one top 25 team left on their schedule (UCLA on October 23). Oklahoma could be a good play, as well, in part because it has a softer schedule than most other contenders and therefore has a relatively clear path to the College Football Playoffs. Once you’re in the dance, anything can happen!

OU quarterback Spencer Rattler released his new marketing logo, complete with a snakehead coming out of the S for Spencer, after the NIL era began on July 1.

Heisman Trophy

Bryce Young, QB, Alabama +350
Matt Corral, QB, Ole Miss +500
Spencer Rattler, QB, Oklahoma +800
CJ Stroud, QB, Ohio State +1000

As usual, Alabama is favored to rack up all of the awards — well, a lot of them at least. Last season the Crimson Tide won the College Football Playoff and DeVonta Smith earned Heisman Trophy honors. Can they pull off a double-double so to speak, defending the title and sending Bryce Young into the elite Heisman company one year later?

It’s certainly not out of the question, as both Bama and Young remain the favorites in those respective categories. With Stroud and North Carolina signal-caller Sam Howell having already suffered losses, Young is sitting even prettier than he was before the season started. He has played well in his own right, too, with 571 passing yards to go along with 7 touchdowns and 0 interceptions.

But I still think Oklahoma’s Spencer Rattler has the best value at +800. Although Rattler was picked off twice by Tulane two weeks ago, he has accounted for 8 total touchdowns so far this year and he is ready to feast on Big 12 defenses.

Read the three things we learned from last week’s college football action

Pac-12

Oregon +140
Arizona State +400
UCLA +450
Utah +475

There may be an east coast bias when it comes to college football media, but I’m not about to overlook the intrigue currently being offered by the Pac-12.

As we predicted, UCLA is looking great in 2021. The Bruins hammered Hawaii 44-10 and then defeated LSU 38-27. Oregon’s upset of Ohio State gave the Ducks a 2-0 record and a promising Arizona State squad is also undefeated. There are now 4 teams at +475 or better to win this conference. Fasten your seatbelts!

Find out the opening lines for Week 3 of the college football season, and where the early value is

At Pickswise we offer free expert College Football Picks and College Football Predictions for all games in the Power Five conferences and the top 25 teams outside of Power five, including our College Football Parlay picks each week.

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